Throughout March we've been celebrating Women's History Month - and International Women's Day!
Staff and volunteers have been researching famous Wiltshire women from all different walks of life - and have found some incredible stories.
The Museum's own history and current existence owes a lot to the women who have (and still) support and shape the organisation. From Maud Cunnington CBE - our first female president, to our past and present female members, volunteers, staff and trustees.
These are the projects we ran and some of the stories rediscovered:
VOTES FOR WOMEN: In 2019, a Votes For Women exhibition was held in the Museum. The display was a culmination of the Vote 100 project, which combined new research about the brave women in Devizes who campaigned for the vote, with fabulous banners made by community groups in 2018 (the centenary of women’s suffrage in the UK). Alongside working with inspirational woment to produce the banners and walking the 2018 Devizes carnival with them, we also discovered some amazing stories about local women and their fight for the vote in the early 20th century. You can read all about the project and see extracts from the exhibition here.
WESSEX WOMEN WORKSHOP: In late 2019 and early 2020, our Community Curator ran a series of Wessex Women workshops. She spoke to local women about their working lives, asking participants to choose an object that represents their work life and bring it with them (papers, letters, and photographs as well as physical objects). Their conversations were then recorded and documented in the Museum collection as part of the Meaning of Things project.
- Read more
During work in our Library and Archive, one of our volunteers discovered some interesting connections between George Eliot and Devizes. Newspaper cuttings of Eliot’s visit to Devizes, alongside ‘The George Eliot Fellowship Review (number 7)’ a postcard of her birthplace.